Never forget that this nation gives us more than what we give back to it.

Blog Dear Aamir dont pull down the nation for publicity thats too easy
Blog Intolerance debate Tuesday, November 24, 2015 - 14:43

By Prasanna Karthik

In 2004, MF Hussain directed and released a movie titled Meenaxi, starring Tabu. A song in the movie, Noor-Un-Al, had a verse taken from the Quran. The All-India Ulema council, Milli council, All India Muslim council, Raza academy, Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Hind, Jamat-e-Islami etc. protested against the movie, calling it blasphemous. In response, MF Hussain’s son said his father had no intentions to offend anyone, and quietly withdrew the movie from theatres just two days before its release. You haven’t spoken a word against the intolerance of the groups mentioned above.

When the movie Vishwaroopam was released, Muslims in Tamil Nadu protested, and agreed to allow the movie’s release only after certain scenes were cut. Vishwaroopam, stars Kamal Hassan, who on many occasions has mocked Hindu gods and Hindu practices. At the peak of the protest, you never spoke a word against the intolerance of the Muslim groups.

Various Christian groups rose in protest against the movie adaptation of Da Vinci code, and the movie was banned in Punjab, Goa, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. In other places, the movie was released with an ‘Adult’ certificate, despite the movie having no explicit scenes whatsoever. In addition, the censor board insisted that theatres carry a special 15 seconds disclaimer before and after the movie. Till now, you haven’t uttered a word against the intolerance of the Christian groups.

Ironically, when your movie PK released, the government of the day did not interfere with the artistic rights of the film makers, despite many sections of the society feeling hurt by its portrayal of their faith. Much after the movie had runs its course, you offered a reluctant apology for hurting the sentiments of people, but that was after the movie grossed a whopping INR 7 billion.

And when your fellow actor Salman Khan was convicted by a court for homicide, which involved killing poor people lying on the pavement, you never spoke a word against drunken driving; instead, you went, hugged him and expressed your solidarity with the convicted Salman Khan.

And yes, there is growing intolerance in India. On March 13th, a 71-year-old nun was raped in a church in Kolkata, by a Bangladeshi immigrant Mohammad Salim Sheik, with the help of his other Bangladeshi friends. Four youth from the suburbs of Kalyan joined the ISIS, and many from West Bengal and a few other states are likely to join the Islamic State. Thirty-seven-year-old Afsha Jabeen was arrested by the Telangana police, for recruiting youth in India to join ISIS. And do you know what Arif Fayaz and Fahad Shaikh, two misguided Indian youth who left India to join ISIS told their families? They said 'I do not want to live in this sinful country.’ Now does that sound familiar?

No matter who we are, we should never forget that this nation gives us more than what we give back to it. And to carry forward our personal agenda, such as promoting our next movie, we should never try to be in the news by pulling the nation down. And everything in life is not about a deal that you can snap whenever it doesn't serve your vested commercial interests.

Satyameva Jayate,

PK.

(Prasanna Karthik is a management consultant, based out of Delhi. His Twitter handle is ).

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